International News

Pope Francis Sends Aid to Lebanon

A man walks past rubble of damaged buildings Aug. 7, 2020, following blasts at Beirut’s port area. (Photo: CNS/Aziz Taher, Reuters)

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Pope Francis has sent 250,000 euros ($295,000) to Lebanon to help the Catholic Church and Catholic charitable organizations assist people impacted by the massive explosion Aug. 4 in Beirut.

The Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development said Aug. 7 that the funds — an “initial” donation — were sent through the Vatican nuncio in Beirut “to meet the needs of the Lebanese church in these moments of difficulty and suffering.”

“This donation is intended as a sign of His Holiness’ attention and closeness to the affected population and of his fatherly closeness to people in serious difficulty,” the dicastery’s announcement said.

The Vatican office also noted that immediately after the blast, Caritas Lebanon, Caritas Internationalis and Catholic charity organizations from around the world set to work helping everyone in need, providing medical care, shelter and distributing food and other basic necessities.

The explosion, which killed more than 150 people and injured more than 5,000, also destroyed homes, churches, monasteries and other buildings, the dicastery noted.

Related: Lebanon’s Catholic Leaders Seek Help; Here’s Where You Can Donate

Related: Amid Deadly Blast in Beirut, Lebanese Turn to Maronite Catholic Saint for Healing